ReachOut Funding 2017-2018
ReachOut serves to build God’s Kingdom outside of the walls of Deep Water by investing in local and international ministries that serve the poor, reach the lost and plant new churches. Deep Water commits 10% of offerings received; through ReachOut we find partner organizations that are doing great work and provide financial and in some cases volunteer support to amplify their mission. These partners are outstanding in their work - they accomplish their mission with excellence.
This year we launched ReachOut, initiating partnerships and finding Champions to represent them throughout Deep Water.
As you can see from the mix of organizations and impacts detailed below, together we were able to do more than any of us could do alone. The sex trafficked are freed, the poor are fed, the kids who have come as refugees have play equipment (and juice boxes!), those far from God have new, effective churches in their area, and other kids have hats, mitts and school supplies.
We do this because we believe the God who created and loves everyone uses disciples in churches to serve the poor and spread the good news. We do the work of building God’s Kingdom, and we help plant more churches that will do the same.
In short, this year through ReachOut you:
- Partnered in planting 5 churches (Halifax, Truro, Ontario, Nicaragua and one other international location)
- Provided playground equipment in Halifax
- Sponsored a child in Nicaragua
- Launched Celebrate Recovery in 2 churches (and counting) in Port-au-Prince, Haiti
- Funded a clothes boutique for at risk mothers in Halifax
- Provided disaster relief support to the Caribbean
- Fed hundreds of hungry people in Halifax
- Provided trade school scholarships to 4 students in Port-au-Prince, Haiti
- Provided a great drop-in opportunity for parents in Halifax
- Fought against human trafficking internationally
- Provided subsidized sports camp in Halifax
- Supported the education of a future church planter in New Brunswick
- Supported the efforts to reintegrate parolees in an effective, supportive community in Halifax
- Provided for missionaries doing youth leadership training throughout Haiti
- Provided in-school anti-human trafficking education to 2197 students and 585 adults students in NS and NB
This report is longer than most ministry reports. I want everyone at Deep Water to understand which organizations we’re supporting and what results they are seeing as a result of our support.
Below is a list of the various ministries that ReachOut supported over the 2017-2018 year, and a summary of what was accomplished with the funding that was provided.
Local ReachOut Ministries
Open Arms Centre
The Open Arms Centre provides a safe and comfortable gathering environment for women and children in the Unique Square area. They provide scheduled activities for women including Bible study, sewing class, budgeting and other life skills programming. For children, aged 5-12, Open Arms offers seasonal programs including summer and March Break camps as well as an after school drop-in program that provides healthy snacks, fun activities, homework help and occasional outings.
Open Arms’ close proximity to Deep Water and their effective work with potentially marginalized individuals made Open Arms a natural partner for us to amplify. Their centre has been especially busy since newly arrived Syrian refugees have reached their 13th month in country meaning they no longer receive the same level of government assistance.
Through our relationships at the Centre we learned that juice boxes are a big deal at the centre. Having a juice box to include in children’s snack bag is very helpful and the kids consider them a special treat. With that in mind, we bought juice boxes for the many field trips Open Arms took over March Break. In addition ReachOut supported the purchase of playground toys (a basketball net, soccer nets, playgroup balls, countless jump ropes, hula hoops and a whole bunch of other fun stuff) and equipment to furnish Open Arms’ new playground.
Come Play is a free, semi-structured play group that offers a fun, interactive environment for caregivers and children 0-5. The group, averaging around 40 people, meets Friday mornings at Deep Water Church. A number of those who attend are not part of any church or are new to Deep Water.
Funds from ReachOut provided refreshments and snacks for caregivers and children and enabled this weekly event to be free of charge. In addition, funds ensured a colourful variety of programming. This has included craft instructors and materials, balloon art, Easter activities, and Christmas items for caregivers and children.
Come Play helps to forge and strengthen relationships among caregivers from all different walks of life, many of them unfamiliar with the Christian faith and otherwise unlikely to engage with Deep Water. Some unchurched caregivers that began coming to Come Play are now attending worship gatherings at Deep Water. Others who began attending are now volunteering in order to help make Come Play even more effective. Come Play will be entering its fourth year and continues to provide a warm, open environment for community members and others to engage with Deep Water.
Open Door Centre
Open Door Centre is a judgement-free space offering support to empower young people in making critical decisions around sex, pregnancy, abortion, and parenting. These topics can be a challenge for many young people to talk about. It is therefore of the utmost importance that the clients of Open Door feel welcomed, supported, and valued during their visits to the centre.
One of the key elements in achieving this goal is a boutique where returning clients can select much-needed items to support them in their journey of pregnancy, parenting, or escape from sexual exploitation. Before partnering with ReachOut, this boutique was essentially a large closet with items stored in plastic bins. With Deep Water’s investment the centre purchased and installed shelving, cupboards, storage units, and better lighting for the boutique. They also purchased storage units for other areas of the centre so that non-boutique items could be moved out and stored more efficiently where they are needed. As well, they purchased some high-demand items that were in short supply, such as bus tokens, phone cards, and clothes. The boutique is now a beautiful, well-stocked space that is both efficient for the staff at the centre as well as a place where clients feel valued and supported.
Since the installation of the boutique, feedback has been 100% positive. The staff and volunteers are thrilled with how it organizes the essential items that are donated. The improvement in organization has meant that staff and volunteer time has been maximized, as they can find items they are looking for quickly and easily.
The first client to visit the boutique was full-term in pregnancy and about to give her baby for adoption. She did not have the means to buy her baby girl an outfit for the hospital, and she was deeply touched to have the boutique available to her. It meant that she was able to pick out some clothes and blankets for her baby as she gave her to the adoptive family. The boutique has only been up and running for a few weeks, so this is only the beginning of the impact it will have on clients of Open Door Centre. It is an investment that will keep giving and blessing both the young people of Halifax and the staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to serve them.
Says Open Door Centre’s Executive Director, Heather Harmon “With the help of Deep Water Church and Reach Out we were enabled to serve our clients in new ways! Thank you for extending your love and the funds to meet the needs of the Centre and our clients. You are truly a blessing to us!”
Helping Exploited Youth (H.E.Y. - Part of the Open Door Centre)
Through H.E.Y., Open Door Centre is dedicated to eliminating sex trafficking by empowering individuals and communities with protection and prevention knowledge and skills. They hold awareness sessions in schools, churches and other places within communities.
During the past year they were privileged to help Ashley*, a young woman looking for help with her pregnancy and trafficking situation. They helped her find a place of sanctuary to heal and raise her child in a loving, safe environment.
Trafficked teens still need help: Nearly weekly, parents, youth workers, or family members call us desperate for help with a young trafficked person in their life. Every victim must overcome many obstacles to reach out for help: fear, shame, exorbitant "leaving fees", or their love for their trafficker. Many brave exploited women and men have taken the major step to reach out to the Open Door Centre for help through the H.E.Y. program.
Over the past year, 2197 students and 585 adults were provided training in anti-human trafficking education. They reached 15 schools and equipped all Halifax school guidance counsellors, from both the French and English school boards.
Souls Harbour is a drop-in centre that provides a place of community for men and women facing hunger, homelessness, poverty, abuse and addiction. Souls Harbour serves local families, as well as seniors from neighbouring affordable housing blocks. They also offer free food, clothing, toiletries and household items.
Up to 100 hot, nutritious lunches are served every weekday at Souls Harbour Rescue Mission.
Reach Out donated $4,000 to Souls Harbour to fund an evening meal on the first Friday of every month. Without this money and hands-on help from Deep Water, this evening meal would not have been feasible for the ministry. Volunteers from Deep Water help to serve the meal to guests, clear tables, and clean up afterwards. Guests have been grateful to be greeted with warm smiles, friendly faces, and many are happy to have someone to talk with during their time at the centre. A couple of the guests mentioned attending Celebrate Recovery, and Deep Water’s presence at the Friday dinners has demonstrated our continued love and support for our community. We are excited to continue to build relationships with the guests and the Souls Harbour staff throughout the next year.
The Souls Harbour team have told us they are thrilled with the new partnership with Deep Water, and are grateful to now be able to offer Friday dinner service to the community.
ReachOut International Relief
This year ReachOut contributed $1,000 to disaster relief efforts in the Caribbean. As well, $1,500 has been provided to World Hope Canada to support their newly launching efforts to provide clean water to disaster areas in the immediate aftermath of catastrophic events.
Through ReachOut, support was provided to Pastors Mike and Nancy Miller as they launched Nova Church. Nova is doing a great job in presenting the gospel to many in our city. To date, nearly 100 people have indicated that they are going to start following Jesus through this ministry. By selecting and supporting Nova in their launch efforts, we chose to work in cahoots with them in spreading the message of Jesus throughout our city.
The Halifax Community Chaplaincy Society (HCCS)
HCCS enables healing within individuals and communities by compassionately facilitating the reintegration of ex-offenders using the best of evidence-based practices. Each year, through extensive collaboration with both law enforcement and community stakeholders, they assist approximately 60 people in the HRM on their journey towards restoration. ReachOut has partnered with HCCS in the initial stages of their planned House of Hope, which will establish a place of belonging and restoration for our brothers and sisters as they transition back into society.
Support was provided to Kingswood student, Amanda Oicle, as part of a matching grant program. Amanda is a Deep Water member who is finishing her studies to become a pastor, focused on church planting. We look forward to seeing this investment pay off through her ministry!
Ground Swell Church Plant
Groundswell is a new church plant led by Tammy Giffen in Truro. Tammy is a gifted, smart, and experienced leader with a deep burden to plant churches that connect with people who are far from God. Groundswell will launch in September and momentum is growing as new people join the launch team and God provides in incredible ways for the financial needs of the church. We are so excited to invest in this incredible opportunity for Kingdom growth in the Truro. 20,000 people live within a 20 minute radius of Truro and many, many of them have yet to find new life in Christ. Groundswell is starting in a movie theatre and so in addition to direct financial support we have also been able to give them a couple of high end carts and some excellent speakers that we no longer need but that will help them get all geared up for being a theatre church. AJ had the chance to meet one of their team members recently and they went out of their way to thank us for our support - moral, financial, and equipment - and how encouraged they were by it.
Marten Falls (First Nations Fly-in reserve) Church Plant
ReachOut provided $8,000 to support Transformation Church’s efforts to build a church in Marten Falls, Ontario. Transformation Church is a 6 month old church plant in Thunder Bay, lead by Nathan Maskery. Marten Falls is a First Nations community located 400 miles North of Thunder Bay. It overlooks a body of water where the Ogoki and Albany rivers meet. It is a fly-in only reserve and has a population of approximately 200 people. However, there are six to seven hundred people who call Marten Falls home and are registered in the band office but choose to live in Thunder Bay or other cities.
There are only a handful of Christians who live in Marten Falls. Alcohol and drug abuse is rampant in this community, with deadly effects on many of the families who live there. Members of the band requested Transformation Church to come and the Band Council are open to the idea of establishing a church. They will be engaging in setting up an Alpha program, a concentrated period of work along with setting up weekly services.
Joe Howe School support - (Relationship, not a partnership)
It’s been about 7 months since we began to intentionally build a relationship with Joseph Howe Elementary School. The school is about 200 paces from our front door and serves a high proportion kids from low income families including children from nearby low-income housing areas and a large number of Syrian immigrant children. We have been able to provide hats and mitts for every kid in the school almost 2 times over, we served a Christmas pancake breakfast to the entire school, have provided school supplies for kids whose families cannot afford them, and in June we will put on a year end BBQ for the whole school. When we first approached the school about serving them they were very happy for the offer but as we have continued to show up strong in support of their important work with these precious kids, we are becoming a more and more of a trusted partner. There is an old question that asks “If your church stopped existing tomorrow would anyone in your neighbourhood from outside the church notice.” We think the students and staff of Joseph Howe Elementary School would notice and we are going to make that all the more true over the next year.
ReachOut International Ministries
Over this past year, we have continued to provide monthly financial support to our missionary partners - Carl & Maya Gilles, who have begun to see the fruits of recent investments in new programming. Celebrate Recovery has been established in two local churches, and there is a great desire to continue expansion. Additionally, leaders were selected for training under the Community Health Evangelism (CHE) program.
We continued to deepen our partnership with Petionville Wesleyan. In November, we sponsored Pastor Jeannot and Pastor Myrtha to attend the Global Leadership Summit in Port-au-Prince.
Through the Petionville Scholarship fund, we continued support for Weline’s medical training. She expressed her thanks through a letter, which was shared on the Reach Out blog. In addition to Weline, we provided funding for three other students to begin their post-secondary studies in Translation (French to English).
ReachOut invested $8,500 through Global Partners to spread the gospel and plant a new church. We are currently working with them on the specifics of which area of the world the church will be planted in. Showing the Jesus Film in areas that have few to no churches is one of the most effective ways to spread the message of the gospel. Since 1979 over 530 million people around the world have made decisions for Christ after viewing this film.
International Anti-Human Trafficking
ReachOut provided support to World Hope Canada for their efforts in Sierra Leone, Liberia and the Philippines to assist the victims of human trafficking. Each of these 3 efforts have been lauded for their effectiveness yet face financial challenges in time periods between specific government grants.
Upstream began support of Engel, a Compassion student in Nicaragua. 100% of the funds for his support come from the Upstream children!
For the upcoming year a significant project was announced of a Child Survival Project in Managua, Nicaragua. Details can be found here https://www.deepwaterchurch.com/reachout/2018/4/17/our-new-partnership-with-compassion
Nicaragua Church Plant
$2,000 was provided to fund a church plant in Nicaragua. The ReachOut investment will assist in the development and launch of a new church.
In conclusion, it is only through your sacrificial and consistent support of Deep Water that we are able to provide ReachOut funding to amplify these great organizations and initiatives. In the upcoming year, more opportunities will be available to get involved in a hands on way, in particular for the local ministries we partner with. Through ReachOut we are just getting started in building God’s Kingdom in Halifax, Canada and throughout the world.